Jul 29, 2019

Report: Major wind project off Massachusetts coast hits snag

Offshore windfarm in Redcar, England. Photo: Ian Forsyth/Getty Images

Federal approval for a large wind farm off the Massachusetts coast is being held up by "infighting" among agencies, Reuters reports.

Why it matters: The problems come as U.S. offshore wind, which has been very slow to get moving, finally appears poised to become a major industry as deep-pocketed developers plan large projects off several states.

But, but, but: Per Reuters, the first of these big projects — called Vineyard Wind — is facing delays because the National Marine Fisheries Service hasn't yet reached an agreement with the Interior Department's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.

The big picture: "How the problem is resolved will shape the regulatory blueprint for a growing list of offshore wind developers seeking to tap in to rising U.S. demand for renewable energy, but who face objections from fishermen worried the turbines will affect commercial species or make fishing more difficult," their story states.

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Wind power is winning in the U.S. despite Trump's critiques

Data: U.S. Department of Energy; Chart: Axios Visuals

President Trump used a speech at a Shell petrochemicals plant in Pennsylvania on Tuesday to revive his attacks against wind energy, but his speech came just days after Department of Energy's latest major analysis of wind technology trends.

Why it matters: The timing of the president's speech clashed with the report, which underscored why wind has become an increasingly competitive resource.

Go deeperArrowAug 14, 2019

As wind and solar energy grow, so do their challenges

Data: WoodMac; Chart: Axios Visuals

Costs for wind and solar electricity have plummeted in the U.S. and around the world, driving incredible growth in these cleaner sources of energy and helping combat climate change.

But, but, but: The costs associated with the variability of wind and solar — it’s not always windy or sunny — are growing as states, progressive politicians and corporations push for rapid increases in these resources to levels much greater than what we have today.

Why climate change is so hard to tackle: Our stubborn energy system

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

To adequately address climate change on the level scientists say we must, the world would need to slash its use of oil, natural gas and coal within 30 years, a Herculean task given our deep dependence.

Driving the news: Democrats on the presidential campaign trail and international leaders preparing for a United Nations summit next month say urgent action is needed, but few actually have viable plans for how and when to cut our fossil-fuel use.